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. the inappropriate e-mails. >> you're saying that barack obama meeting with john boehner and mitch mcconnell doesn't quite get readers as excited? >> not as titillating. >> this is what the election was fought over and yet i have the impression that a lot of the country is yawning but really many of the journalists covering the story are oning. >> there's a story about low how the mighty are falling. privacy, security, while covering the sex. >> are you suggesting that the bigger issues are actually a bit of a shall we say figure lea le? there are bigger issues there but the problem is the fiscal cliff is extremely important. it's interesting to me that it's ben bernanke who dubbed it. i would have thought a reporter would have dubbed it. >> as a consumer of newses, when you see stories about the fiscal cliff do you go clicking off to someone else? >> no. i don't. i try. i try my darnest. i pick up the stories and think i'm going to understand it for once. it's a big, big story if you're covering economic on a national stage. i think it is getting covered a lot yochl ku. blame the media if readers
the table from the democrats' perspective? >> absolutely. the thing is is that john boehner and the republicans, the last time we went around these negotiations, remember it was june of 2011, on the debt ceiling negotiations, the president and the speaker played golf, and there were all those grand bargain talks behind closed doors. republicans tried to put it on the table back then, and democrats said, absolutely no way. and i think they're going to get a similar response this time. remember, it was just a few weeks ago when john boehner after the election essentially said, there's nothing we can do about obama care. it's going into effect next year. people are going to have to start enrolling, those exchanges are going to have to get up and running. he saw a revolt among his house republicans and republicans across the united states, just for saying it. now john boehner is doing a little backtracking. he wrote in the cincinnati enquirer, his hometown newspaper, the president's health care law adds a massive, expensive, unworkable government program at a time when our natio
obama was re-elected as president, i have to say, you are probably not thankful that john boehner was re-elected as speaker of the house. and vice versa, if you're psyched about john boehner, you're probably not psyched about president obama. but there is one thing about the re-election of both of these men that i think is maybe worth being thankful for. i am thankful that john boehner forever and president obama may be only recently, these two men have been willing to show emotion in public. to be big, tough, american leaders of the highest order, right? both of them in positions where they really answer to no one but the voters. and they are willing to be seen shedding a tear, without shame. i am thankful for that in our national american leadership. i am thankful that the brilliant bbc series, "house of cards," about the most evil politician ever, a mini series that i've watched a million times and i've been addicted to for years, i am happy, i am thankful, i am thankful that "house of cards" is being remade by kevin spacey and it comes out in february. i'm thankful for nbc white hous
negotiations are off to a bumpy start. house speaker john boehner wrote an op-ed yesterday calling for the president's health care law to be part of the fiscal talks. the white house told the "huffington post" the president opposes that. joining me now from washington, nbc white house correspondent kristen welker and neil irwin. welcome to both of you. happy holiday. >> happy holidays, alex. >> kristen, politico said the negotiations are off to a rough start. what do you see as the likelihood of a deal before the end of the year? >> alex, i think they are off to a relatively rough start. president obama expected to invite congressional leaders back to the white house next week after the holiday, but it seems at this point aides are trying to hammer out the beginnings of the deal. republicans seem to be digging in their heels on the issue of taxes, saying they don't want to see the bush era tax cuts expire for the wealthiest americans. of course, that is something the democrats have been adamant about. so they're stuck on this old issue of taxes. and also stuck on the issue of entit
'm not going to prejudge it. and we should not be taking iron clad positions. i have faith in john boehner. >> congressman, we have seen this movie before. the bottom line question and, what can speaker boehner sell? if he goes to them and says, look, we cut a deal here, but tax rates have to go up. actual tax rates have to go up on the wealthy, like senator levin just said. can he sell it? >> i think john is going to do all he can to avoid an increase in tax rates. but as senator levin said, you can get the same results by changing deductions, changing exemptions, and that would put more of a tax burden on the rich but it would not affect marginal tax rates. i don't want to prejudge any of it. bottom line, we cannot have sequestration. we cannot go off the fiscal cliff. the election is over. we have a speaker. the democrats have a president. the democrats have harry reid. we have mitch mcconnell. get them in the room. and that's what representative governments should be about. no one gets all they want. if reagan and o'neal can do it, r boehner and obama should be able to do this. >> the
the retreats. >> run the retreats? >> john boehner -- >> you're getting in deeper and deeper. >> they run the caucus meetings every week. she runs the caucus, decides which speakers come in. vice chair of the caucus, lynn jenkins, virginia fox -- >> what's a more important position, chairman and vice chairman of the caucus or speaker of the house -- >> or committee chair. >> any of the committees. >> caucus chairman trumps the committee chairmanship. i've been both. i've been in the leadership and i've been a committee chair. look, you only had one woman in contentious for committee chairmanship, candace miller. they're knife fights. when the caucus was allowed to speak, they elected -- they selected the woman. unfortunately, you know -- >> a bloomberg article points out uncomfortable optics, the white republican house is going to present. quote, the visuals will be striking when the house debates whether to overhaul the country's tax code and consider ways to keep the costs in social security and medicare under control. white males of the republican party will be arguing to reduce benefi
, and norah. the president and house speaker john boehner spoke by phone over the weekend. top aides in the house and senate tell us that negotiations at this point are just taking place between the president's staff and speaker boehner's staff. that's because any deal that involves raising tax revenue is going to face its biggest challenge in the republican-led house. top republicans returning from thanksgiving recess urged the president to make the first offer in fiscal cliff negotiations. and they expressed a new openness to raising tax revenue, if democrats agree to make cuts to strengthen medicare and medicaid. >> elections come and go. and when they go the spirit to find common ground becomes greater. >> reporter: georgia republican saxby chambliss and mark warner lead the gang of eight. four senate democrats and four senate republicans, who originally met in 2007 to craft a plan to cut the debt. >> you still don't have a final product after 2 1/2 years. why do shud we have any confidence that the president and the leaders should get anything done i
are off to a rocky start with house speaker john boehner writing an editorial saying he thinks the president's health care plan should be on the table. that is certainly something that both sides will go to the mat over, but i think there's a lot of pressure to get a deal done by the first of the year for the reason that you just cited. because if they don't, this will have a big impact according to a lot of economists on the economy and they just don't want to see that happen and bear the brunt of that. >> understandably so. quickly, the president's plans for today are what? is he there in the house behind you or elsewhere? >> reporter: he is in the house behind me. quiet day at the white house with his traditional thanksgiving dinner with the first family. i'm sure there will be all the fixings on the table, turkey, ham, a lot of different types of pies. yesterday president obama bardened a thanksgiving turkey cobbler and alternate gobbler and they went to a local food bank to deliver food there. president obama today delivering his weekly address wishing all americans a happ
bring some hope to john boehner, the man in charge of actually negotiating this deal with the president. after the election, the speaker did say increased revenues were acceptable if coupled with entitlement reform. but will it be supported in the house? that's where grover is seen as more of a legend than a lobbyist. some are signaling the tax debate does not start and end with this old pledge. eric cantor, who was adamant last time about opposing any revenue increase hit that note on msnbc just this morning. >> there's a lot that has been said about this pledge, and i will tell you when i go to the constituents that have re-elected me, it is not about that pledge, it really is about trying to solve problems. john boehner went to the white house ten days ago and said republicans in the house were willing to put revenues on the table. that was a big move. >> by the standards of republican politics, ben, that was a big move. and eric cantor is doing something pretty important there. i just want to say before we go into all of the nitty-gritty details, tell us about what it means for eric
it takes to communicate a sense of urgency. >> on the other side of pennsylvania avenue, john boehner says he thinks there is a way to avoid that cliff. >> it's time for the president and democrats to get serious about the spending problem that our country has, but i'm optimistic we can continue to work together to avert this crisis and sooner rather than later. >> and look who's coming to lunch. mitt romney will break bread with the president at the white house tomorrow. >> pledge of allegiance, anti-tax crusader grover norquist warns republicans against breaking their promise. >> it is possible if the republicans lose in such a way they've got their fingerprints on the murder weapon, then you have a problem. bush couldn't run again in '92 successfully because he had his fingerprints on a very bad deal, bad on spending and bad on taxes and he broke his word. >> what is alan simpson's message to grover? we'll ask him in a few minutes. >> how do you deal with guys who came to stop government or grover wandering the earth in his white robe saying he wants to drown government in the bathtub.
. >> reporter: in his letter of resignation to speaker of the house john boehner, jackson wrote, "my health issues and treatment regimen have become incompatible with service in the house of representatives." the son of civil rights leader jesse jackson, jackson, jr., mysteriously disappeared from public view last june. it was later revealed he was undergoing treatment for bipolar disorder. jackson was reelected earlier this month, though he did not actively campaign, recording only a single message for his constituents. but his health may not be the only factor in jackson's decision to resign. for more than a year, the washington field office of the f.b.i. has been investigating the possible misuse of campaign funds, according to federal sources, who say discussions about a possible plea deal began in just the past few weeks. today, for the first time, jackson acknowledged that investigation. a plea deal does not appear to be imminent, jeff. late today, jackson's lawyers put out a written statement in which they said, "we hope to negotiate a fair resolution of the matter, but the process c
and top republicans including house speaker john boehner are accelerating. but the white house must contend with members of his own party who are pushing back against proposals that significantly reshape entitlement programs like medicare and social security. white house press secretary jay carney said yesterday the president is open to compromise and should republicans make a realistic proposal on taxes, they will meet them halfway. >> math tells us that you can't get the kind of balanced approach that you need without having rates be part of the equation. we haven't seen a proposal that achieves that, a realistic proposal, that achieves that. the reality is, closing loopholes and ending deductions as an alternative to raising rates on the top earners, top 2%, those making over $250,000, sounds good, but you have to look at the actual contents of those proposals. >>> and a new poll shows the majority of americans do want compromise in order to avoid the fiscal cliff. 67% say a deal should be a combination of spending cuts and tax increases. and if no deal is reached by the end of t
the debt limit unless forced to by john boehner. >> and by the way, john boehner is talking about having to get the majority of a majority on tax issues. he's not going to get a majority of majority on debt raising. >> much harder on the debt ceiling than taxes. >> that's what i'm saying. i refuse to vote to raise a debt ceiling when they were trying to raise it to $5 trillion. it's something you don't do unless you get a lot of cuts on the other side. >> and it's not a game. because if you don't raise it, we saw what happened last time, you can get your debt downgraded and has real economic consequenc consequences. and that's why when people think about the fiscal cliff, we all assume that sane minds will prevail and they'll come up with some deal. there's no guarantee that sane minds will prevail. and recent history would suggest that sanity almost never prevails in washington. so you can assume it's going to be more difficult than we think. you can assume that the bush tax cuts might all go away for a short period of time. and you cannot assume they just raise the debt limit. you cann
's been suffering from bipolar disorder and dedepression. he did submit his resignation letter to john boehner. he talked about his health and his accomplishments and also talked about the investigation that's ongoing looking into the possible misuse of campaign funds. they are my mistakes and mine alo alone. that part is interesting because sandy jackson, his wife, is an alder person here in chicago. according to the wall street journal she is involved in this i think ve investigation. she's been talked about as a possible replacement. we haven't heard from jesse jackson jr. or senior on this. >> i just find it's so painful at this point for me not only to know that he won't be in the congress but to know that he's still struggling with a serious, very serious mental health issue. >> ted, is this an indicator this is the end of jackson's political career? >> reporter: well, i would think so when you look at the totality of all that's happened to him in the last six, eight months. when you have the mental health sur issues, let's say he gets that under control, he still has this invest
speaker john boehner and republicans want bigger cuts in government spending. thanksgiving gave lawmakers a quick break from the fiscal cliff conundrum. now it's time to hunker down and get back to business. >> reporter: after meeting with president obama before the thanksgiving holiday -- >> i want to welcome the congressional leadership here. >> reporter: -- congressional leaders expressed optimism to reaching a deal. >> we had a very constructive meeting with the president. to talk about america's fiscal problem. >> we have a corner stones of being able to work something out. >> reporter: staffers have been working behind the scenes to fine common ground. among the big sticking points how to bring in more tax revenue and reduce spending on programs like medicare. but it's not yet clear when lawmakers and the president will meet next. even if some progress is made this week a final deal could still be a long way off. >> we rarely see the hill and the white house make decisions early. they tend to do better when they have a deadline so i would be pleasantly surprised to see it, a deal em
with house speaker john boehner, and they talked about a great phone cal, courteous phone call, they say, but that aides talked about how each side talked about the importance of not making all these public statements so that each side could have room to negotiate. if there's movement being made, we don't know that yet. athena jones, thank you very much. >> coming up in about ten minutes your brain on the fiscal cliff. don't worry. there is a cure. >>> speaking of a whole lot of money, the powerball jackpot is now the largest many the game's history. an estimated $425 million. even though no one won last night's jackpot, people in eight states won $1 million prizes for matching five numbers. the winning numbers were 22, 32, 37, 44, 50, and the powerball was 34. it was the 15th drawing in a row with no jackpot winner. the next drawing wednesday night. >>> clashes on the streets in egypt. anti-government protests sparking outside the capital. now a call for millions to take part. we are live in cairo. hmm, it says here that cheerios helps lower cholesterol as part of a heart healthy diet.
on democrats to give away the store here. >> gloria, didn't the president when he tried that deal with john boehner that didn't work out, didn't he agree to significant cuts in medicare? >> he did. there were almost there once before. there are different stories about who moves the goalposts in that negotiation. if i were the president and i were going to van, i would say, look, this president has an opportunity right now to shape the future of american budgets. the blueprint for the american economy and for american spending priorities for a decade to come in this particular deal. if i were the president, i would say, look, it's not going to be perfect, but we really do have an opportunity here. i have an opportunity as president. united states to lead this country into fiscal solvency if each side gives a little bit. >> let me speak up for van -- >> van, hold on a second. i want ross to wrap it up. >> well, i was just going to say i disagree completely with van on the policy. i think over the long run if you look at the growth rate in medicare and the fact that every year that you don't c
. the house speaker john boehner's office today announcing something similar. congressional republicans holding events in washington as well as back in their home districts to frame the president's tax plan as a threat to new hiring. but some republicans as you know are already hinting they're open to eliminating deductions even if it means breaking that pledge that the lobbyist grover norquist has been getting law makers to sign for years. joining us now to talk about it all, grover norquist, president of americans for tax reform. grover, thanks very much for coming in. >> good to be with you. >> the trend we're seeing now from members of congress questioning or pushing back on the pledge. we've seen it before to a certain degree, but we're seeing a lot more of it i sense right now. there's a sense this movement is gaining some steam. is this just more of the same, in your opinion, is there something different going on right now? does any of this surprise you? >> well, so far, what we've seen is the same people who two years ago got in front of tv cameras and said let's make a deal whe
not to raise taxes. plus, house majority leader john boehner sounding more and more like republicans won't be easily won over during tax talks. the mering fiscal cliff next. >>> and it was a normal thanksgiving morning until this multi-car wreck. how some 100 cars collided in texas. >> it was just a kmpl seconds, chain reaction. crazy. flashed right before my eyes. i don't spend money on gasoline. i am probably going to the gas station about once a month. last time i was at a gas station was about...i would say... two months ago. i very rarely put gas in my chevy volt. i go to the gas station such a small amount that i forget how to put gas in my car. [ male announcer ] and it's not just these owners giving the volt high praise. volt received the j.d. power and associates appeal award two years in a row. ♪ throughout our lives. one a day men's 50+ is a complete multi-vitamin designed for men's health concerns as we age. it has more of 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day men's 50+. >>> a lot of people in texas say they are lucky to be alive today. that's after this massive
they are likely to get a big deal. it seems that republicans leading on this, like john boehner, like lindsay graham frankly, they're signaling they want to have a big deal. think in the coming three months or so, we'll probably see something pretty big from them. >> doug? >> i agree. i think that they are going to do a bit of a kick the can. but in the interest of getting a deal that people can live with and selling it well, the president is getting outside of washington to go to the american people on this. he needs time to do that well. so i don't think kicking the can down the street is a bad thing, it might help them accomplish something. >> back in a moment, everyone, with everyone's must-reads. s ar. oh no, not that, not here! [ male announcer ] antacids don't relieve gas. gas-x is designed to relieve gas. gas-x. the gas xperts. wears off. [ female announcer ] stop searching and start repairing. eucerin professional repair moisturizes while actually repairing very dry skin. the end of trial and error has arrived. try a free sample at eucerinus.com. >>> we're back with the big three. it
some other republicans. >> this is quite the tight rope for a lot of republicans. even john boehner was reticent in saying, okay, i'm ready to raise taxes. he still is talking about maybe the health care reform act taking some sort of hit. but then therein lies the question that so many americans, they want to see a compromise. what is it going to take? what is going to be the area where either side is willing to compromise? >> well, i think republicans are going to want to see some real spending cuts. the situation has changed. we are in an untenable situation, spending so much more than we're taking in. right now, when you look at president obama's proposed spending cuts, a lot of them are leisure. they're cuts in there, for example, that are already agreed upon. in other words, we already have. so you can't really count those. there are other things he called spending cuts which are for wars we're not going to fight. he's going to save a trillion dollars not fighting wars that we're not going to fight anyway. so that's like me saying i'm going to give you a trillion dollars, no,
. they're use it as leverage. john boehner said as much to the president. people say the debt ceiling thing is an albatross. most countries don't have a debt limit. they deal with it in a different way. the debt ceiling debate which started this issue of congress not being able to make decisions on financial matters will come to a sometime between december 31st and february 1st. that is another set of things we have to deal with if they get the fiscal cliff dealt with. >> 35 days, we're counting them and going to see if we can get anything done. thank you. >>> what we're also working on this hour -- egyptian president mohamed morsi's power grab is challenged. but will it be enough to preserve democracy? >>> and medical marijuana a 7-year-old patient in oregon is taking the drug. is it right treatment for kids with cancer? dr. sanjay gupta reports. >>> plus -- scott kelly i didn't cal twin brother of nasa astronaut mark kelley, the husband of former congresswoman gabrielle giffords, takes on a historic mission. he heads to space for a year. we'll take a look at what it will be like liv
and frankly for house speaker john boehner. he may want to cut a deal but may not have the votes because these guys might be on a primary suicide mission, some of these house republicans, if they side with raising tax rates. if they raise taxes they will lose the primary and there's no general election, they don't have to where he about voters. >> are democrats signaling where they may be willing to compromise? >> reporter: president has been willing to talk about social security and medicare and put entitlements on the table. the problem the president has is many parts of his base, including some of those house democrats that he might need in some sort of forged compromise, they are not crazy about doing that. we won. the mandate is to raise taxes. there was no mandate from the voters to tinker with social security and tinker with medicare, but at some point the president's going to put that on the table, and the question will his base let him do it? >> let me switch gears a bit. i want to ask you about senator john mccain. he, of course, has been very critical about the potential nomin
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